Tips for helping your child defend themselves against a crime

When your child becomes a teenager or young adult, you’ll have limited control over their actions. While you can advise them on how to stay out of trouble and be sensible, what they do and do not do is ultimately their decision.

If you have been worried for some time that your child has been using or selling drugs or engaging in crimes such as shoplifting, you’ve probably warned them already of the consequences of getting in trouble with the law. If you’ve now found out that they have been arrested and accused of a criminal offense, you’ll probably be concerned regarding how they will defend themselves and what the future has in store for them.

It’s important that you try to support them without pushing them away with your anger or disgust. The following are some tips for successfully doing so.

Make sure that your child knows that you don’t have the power to make this go away

While you’ll always love your child unconditionally, unfortunately, law enforcement officials will not treat them the same way that you might. If your child is old enough to be prosecuted, they should be held responsible for their actions. But if the incident is a misunderstanding, they have the right to defend themselves.

Cooperate with the police

If you have to deal with law enforcement officials, make sure that you cooperate with them. Provide them with the basic information that they request, such as your child’s address, and stay calm.

Put your child in the driver’s seat

While you may be able to get in touch with a lawyer on behalf of your child, make sure that you put your child in the driver’s seat, so that they know it is they who need to defend themselves.

If your child has recently been accused of a crime, make sure that you take swift action to understand how the law will likely apply to them.